The Hurriers’ new album From Acorns Mighty Oaks is out today and, says BOB ORAM,
if ever there’s an LP that can fan every spark of fightback into a flame this year, this is it
AFTER five years of hell under this callous government, at last new artists are emerging who want to make powerful protest music. Joining Thee Faction, Grace Petrie, Steve White and others are the Hurriers, a band that unequivocally understands what their purpose and role is — unlike some — and they want you to “enjoy the storm.”
With a tight, deft rhythm section and some great old-school Clash-style guitar solos, these 10 original songs, along with a cover of the Chris Evans Collective’s Defiance, are lean and trim yet bursting with hooks and choruses that instantly become infectious.
Opening track Spectemur Agendo has a beguiling voiceover by Ian Nairn talking about their hometown of Barnsley and it’s built from a languid, stalking bass line into a blistering statement of intent. When lead singer Lefty asks: “So why do you think we keep on fighting? What do we have to put our pride in?” he answers simply in a glorious affirmation of hope and class consciousness: “No-one tells us why, we know.”
The parliamentary hypocrisy of “We are all in this together” comes under fire on the storming Happy Families and Truth and Justice, which tells the story of miners and the battle of Orgreave, is an absolute gem. Aching with emotion, it richly deserves huge audiences.
You’re Not Gagging Me starts with a furious Ruts-style riff and half-way through slips into a refrain of Clash City Rockers — a nice touch, one born out of the respect and affection of fans not imitators.
The stand-out for me is Acorns which meshes the charm of lyrical British new-wave pop and the rush of cranked US guitar jangle and then morphs back into a fresh and glistening classic northern pop song.
But just when you think the Hurriers have only fast gears, the subtle and measured anti-fascist Britain Last is a beautiful and eloquent homage to equality and harmony.
A glorious debut of traditional rock and blues, the 42-minute album’s imbued with a punk attitude and raw, honest and intelligent lyrics that bristle with anger, hope and inspiration. A must-buy.
From Acorns, Mighty Oaks is available online from thehurriers.co.uk and selected independent record stores. The official album launch takes place at 7pm tonight with a free gig at Barnsley’s Underground venue. Jon Langford and His Men of Gwent, Quiet Loner and a DJ set from Barnsley Sime are also on the bill.